As the Rolling Stones taught us, you can’t always get what you want, but Congressional Republicans seem to have found a way to get what they need, reaching an agreement on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Friday. The bill is now ready to for a vote and heads to the House and Senate floor next week.
The fate of the bill was far from certain, as Republican leadership scrambled to get consensus on the bill’s provisions before Democrat Doug Jones is sworn into the Alabama Senate seat at the end of the month, and the Republican’s narrow 52 seat majority shrinks to 51-49.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) were originally voting no, Rubio because he wanted an expanded child tax credit, and Corker over concerns about the effect on the deficit. Revisions late this week managed to get both Senators back on board: the refundable portion of the child tax credit was increased from $1,100 to $1,400 and Corker released a statement acknowledging that he viewed the bill as “imperfect” but had decided to vote for it because he believed the overall effect to be pro-growth.
A press release from the Senate Finance Committee celebrating the progress on the bill noted that the typical American family of four earning the median income of $73,000 would receive a tax cut of $2,059.
Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX), who chaired the House-Senate conference committee overseeing the bill, praised it as a “historic moment for the American people.”
“For the first time in 31 years, the House and the Senate have now come together to deliver pro-growth tax reform that will help more Americans across our country keep more of their hard-earned money,” said Brady. “This legislation will also grow our economy, make our companies of all sizes more competitive, and help prevent more American jobs from continuing to go overseas. I appreciate my colleagues’ hard work and look forward to voting on this bill in the House next week.”
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Senate Finance Committee Chairman, noted that the process had been challenging but praised the work of members of both the House and Senate who had “examined the merits of each bill, worked to reconcile the differences and found consensus to produce final bicameral legislation.”
“Today marks a critical milestone in this endeavor and keeps us on track to deliver a comprehensive tax overhaul to the American people by year’s end,” said Hatch.
For your listening pleasure, here are The Rolling Stones, performing “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” live at Twickenham Stadium in London, August 2003, as a soundtrack while you read the memo at the end of this post.
Follow Sarah Rumpf on Twitter: @rumpfshaker.